15 dead after Hurricane Maria hits Dominica

Hurricane Maria forecast to become Category 4 storm

Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit wept as he told a reporter the news on the nearby island of Antigua.

Hartley Henry, an adviser to the prime minister, said there had been a "tremendous loss of housing and public buildings".

Nearly the entire 70,000 population has been affected, with 15 confirmed deaths - although this number is expected to rise. "Little contact has been made with the outer communities but persons who walked ten and 15 miles towards the city of Roseau from various outer districts report total destruction of homes, some roadways and crops", he added, while appealing for urgent aid for Dominica in the form of helicopter services to transport food, water and tarpaulins to outer districts for shelter.

"We're used to the lights going out because of storms here in Puerto Rico, but this time, we're anxious", he said. "I saw nearly complete devastation", Skerrit said, recounting his impressions after making several flights over the territory.

"You can not live here without power", said Hector Llanos, a 78-year-old retired NY police officer who planned to leave Saturday for the USA mainland to live there temporarily. "It's absolutely urgent that we get him out".

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The country is in a daze - no electricity, no running water -as a result of uprooted pipes in most communities and definitely to landline or cellphone services on island, and that will be for quite a while.

"This storm crushed us from one end of the island to the other", she said. Two people were killed and two remained missing Wednesday, though the death toll is expected to climb.

A member of a rescue team covers his eyes as he waits to assist in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in Humacao, Puerto Rico.

He said: "We had high winds, we had a bit of flooding, and we had bit of a storm surge that knocked out some of the roads - but that thankfully we have been spared the worst".

"We at the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) are heartbroken over the hurt that Hurricane Maria has inflicted on Dominica".

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Maria is one of three storms churning in the Atlantic Ocean, but it poses the most danger to the hurricane-battered Caribbean.

"My prayer is for renewed strength and resolve to rebuild all of our islands in the wake of these two awful storms", he added. It's on course to pass close to several islands that were devastated by Hurricane Irma, including Barbuda and St. Martin's.

The Dominican Republic, Turks and Caicos and parts of the Bahamas are all within its course of chaos.

Other northern Haitian communities, including Marmelade, Ennery and Gros Morne, were also reporting light to moderate rain as Maria charted its path off the coast.

More news: The Updates On Hurricane Maria Look Especially Disastrous For Puerto Rico

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